Now Thank We All Our God

Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  32:09
0 ratings

Gratitude is enabled by and a response to God's grace.

As I was preparing for this message I found several preachers and commentators who really latch on to the end of v.7 and leverage the message toward giving of money. While that is an important part of our stewardship and discipleship, I want to magnify the cheerful part of that phrase, and focus on the heart condition of gratitude that prompts generosity.
After all, this holiday that we will celebrate in a very different way on Thursday is ThanksGIVING. I want us to take a few minutes to reflect on all the reasons we have to express thankfulness.
2020 has made many attempts to rob our thankfulness; Sickness, death, hardship and isolation are only a few of the impacts of this Virus. Here, we have been blessed to be out of the fray of much of the direct impact, but now the surge is influencing the very way our families interact, gather and celebrate.
In spite of these real circumstances, God’s Word provides a reminder of the ample reasons we have to be grateful, thankful and generous.
2 Corinthians 9:8–15 ESV:2016
8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 9 As it is written, “He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.” 10 He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. 12 For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. 13 By their approval of this service, they will glorify God because of your submission that comes from your confession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others, 14 while they long for you and pray for you, because of the surpassing grace of God upon you. 15 Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!
Transition: Tin these verses I see both motive and results, but first let us consider the source of our generosity.

The Source of Gratitude: God’s Grace (v.8)

Thanks is a sibling of confession

1. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia says, “The fundamental meaning of the Hebrew root is “confess”; it is used in two basic ways: (1) of confessing (declaring) God’s attributes and works, and (2) of confessing sins”[i]
2. The New Testament word for Thanks is word is closely tied to eucharist—what our Catholic and Orthodox friends call the Lord’s Supper. When I hear that word, I think of the distribution of God’s grace, but in thanksgiving, there is an awareness of our need for that very grace.
3. The Bible Knowledge Commentary writes, “[A] spirit of selflessness is a consequence of God’s surpassing grace (cf. “grace” in 8:1, 9; 9:8) supremely expressed in the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ (8:9). [Our scripture lesson today] concludes (9:15) with the grace of God. Thanks in 9:15 is the word charis (“grace, favor”). Believers are to bestow “favor” on God because of His favors bestowed on them.”[ii]
4. When our need is met with God’s provision, the result is an attitude of thanksgiving.
Canterbury Cathedral is a beautiful and historic place. Portions of this imposing structure date back to the twelfth century. Saint Thomas á Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, was murdered in this cathedral four days after Christmas in 1170.
When Thomas was a baby, his mother would weigh him in a basket on his birthdays, then fill the basket with coins, food, and clothing to the identical weight of the child. Then she would go and share her good fortune and joy with the poor.
5. As demonstrated by Becket’s mother, our generosity should be proportionate, but we can never outgive the Lord.
6. Notice the 4 all’s and the 1 every in v.8.
7. While v.8 is a promise about God’s abundance in the future, v.9 recounts His generous grace in the present and the past.
Transition: God’s promise, provision and past performance is ample reason to stir something within us.

The Motive of Gratitude: God’s Giving (vv.9-11)

God Provides Bread & Seed (v.10)

1. Every business owner knows that wise decisions need to be made about how much to re-invest in the company.
Invest too little and future productivity will be hampered, invest too much and current staff is robbed of the pleasure of the results of their labor.
2. V.10 reminds that God provides both seed and bread.
a. What we need today – many of us have expended hours of emotional energy fretting over this coming Thursday, not to mention Christmas plans.
An American author and motivational speaker from a previous generation is noted as saying, “worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.”
b. We can trust a GOOD God to provide our Manna Mercies. Provision that is new every morning.
c. What we will need tomorrow – as we think towards the future it is wise to fill the storehouse, but it stockpiling or hoarding are often indications of a lack of faith.


1. We must guard against scarcity thinking.
Scarcity thinking is the mindset that “the pie is only so big”. It tommy gets a bigger piece, then that means Suzie is left with a smaller piece.
Unless you live near a Nuclear Reactor, a chicken has 2 legs, 2 wings, 2 thighs, and 1 breast that usually gets divided. If you come from a large family, you quickly learned that there was a picking order when the platter was passed around the table.
It is a special treat when the hostess says, “Eat up, there is more of everything in the kitchen”.
2. V.11 promised that we will be enriched in order to be generous, not to hoard or consume on ourselves.
3. Both Testaments give us examples of God’s provision.
a. The jar of oil in Zarephath (1 Kings 17:16).
1 Kings 17:16 ESV:2016
16 The jar of flour was not spent, neither did the jug of oil become empty, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah.
b. Multiplied loaves and fishes [all 4 gospels] (Mt 14:20)
Matthew 14:20 ESV:2016
20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over.
Transition: God has demonstrated generous grace, He has promised daily and future provision which should result in our Trusting Gratitude.

The Results of Gratitude (vv.12-15)

It changes me (v.13)

1. Our submission: choosing to value others above self
2. Our confession: the gospel changes us.
3. Our generosity: abundance meets need.
· Thermometer/thermostat. Sometimes we need to choose to be influencers.
An evergreen is always green despite the changes in weather around it. It is green in the heat of summer as well as the cold of winter. So also our lives are to be characterized by an enduring thankfulness that is unaffected by the changes around us. When the heat of a pressured week or the deadly cold of pain strikes us, we should stand “ever green,” always thankful, regardless of which that surrounds us.
4. Sometimes we need to look for the good. And a decision to adopt an attitude of gratitude can yield amazing results.
In the Chilean village of Chungungo water is nearly as valuable as precious metal. The region is arid and parched, forcing the village to truck in fresh water over dirt roads from miles away. Until recently the average person could afford a mere four gallons a day (compare that to the average American who uses ninety gallons a day), and buying even that meager amount soaked up 10 percent of household incomes. In Chungungo bathing was a luxury.
But then scientists experimented with an ingenious new system for obtaining water. The 330 residents of Chungungo now drink water—the freshest they have ever tasted—from high above, atop nearby El Tofo mountain. Under the direction of Dr. Robert Schemenauer, a Canadian cloud physicist, workers hung on eucalyptus poles a “wall” of finely woven propylene nets, each the size of eight queen-size bed sheets sown together. Seventy-five such nets sift the clouds that sweep in incessantly from the Pacific Ocean.
A close look at the plastic nets reveals propylene fibers meshed in tiny triangles. Like dew collects on grass, infinitesimally small water particles from fog collect on these fibers. Ten thousand such water particles must coalesce to produce one drop of water the size of a tear. Still, each water net collects forty gallons of water a day. The seventy-five nets on El Tofo sift a total of three thousand gallons daily from the drifting clouds and fog.
Sometimes our lives feel as dry and parched as the rocky soil around Chungungo, where only shrubs and cactus grow. What we need are spiritual water nets. Few things will flood the reservoirs of our soul like giving thanks to God.[iii]
5. Those of us who are filled and controlled by God’s Spirit have opportunity to recognize blessings, to concentrate them and bless others like the water nets of Chile.
OPTIONAL: This week the water heater got replaced at the parsonage, so I was reminded of the inner workings of that system. The anode rod is placed in the tank which yields electrons to the oxygen molecules in the water to keep the water from rusting the tank. Eventually that anode rod needs to be replaced. God places us in our environment to “disburse electrons” and trust Him to replenish us.

It prompts others (v.12)

1. Sometimes we need a reminder from others, and others need a reminder from us—this is overflow!
Corrie ten Boom in The Hiding Place relates an incident that taught her always to be thankful. She and her sister, Betsy, had just been transferred to the worst German prison camp they had seen yet, Ravensbruck. On entering the barracks, they found them extremely overcrowded and flea-infested.
That morning, their Scripture reading in 1 Thessalonians had reminded them to rejoice always, pray constantly, and give thanks in all circumstances. Betsy told Corrie to stop and thank the Lord for every detail of their new living quarters. Corrie at first flatly refused to give thanks for the fleas, but Betsy persisted, and Corrie finally succumbed to her pleadings. During the months spent at that camp, they were surprised to find how openly they could hold Bible study and prayer meetings without guard interference. It was not until several months later that they learned the reason the guards would not enter the barracks was because of the fleas.
2. Betsy reminded Corrie until Corrie could later see the reason.
3. God is working Gratitude in you so that you can be the “Betsy” in other people’s lives.
Transition: God’s grace has been lavished, God’s giving is abundant, and these result in our thanks to God (v.15).


A common buzzword today is “unprecedented.” Because this virus is unlike anything we have experienced personally, and because, in large, we are poor students of history, we seem dazed and confused by the reports we hear on the news. But what if history can tell of others who survived hardship?
In 1636, amid the darkness of the Thirty Years’ War, a German pastor, Martin Rinkart, is said to have buried five thousand of his parishioners in one year, an average of fifteen a day. His parish was ravaged by war, death, and economic disaster.
In the heart of that darkness, with the cries of fear outside his window, he sat down and wrote this table grace for his children:
Now thank we all our God
With heart and hands and voices;
Who wondrous things hath done,
In whom his world rejoices.
Who, from our mother’s arms,
Hath led us on our way
With countless gifts of love
And still is ours today.
Here was a man who knew thanksgiving comes from love of God, not from outward circumstances.[iv]
Rather than grumble about family gatherings being cancelled or traditions being suspended, let’s reflect upon all His benefits toward us and become fountains of Gratitude.
Song of Response #564........ “We are So Blessed”
Benediction: Psalm 103:2 (ESV) — Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits,
[i] C. N. Dillman and N. J. Opperwall, “Thank; Thankful(ness); Thanksgiving,” ed. Geoffrey W. Bromiley, The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised (Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1979–1988), 822.
[ii] David K. Lowery, “2 Corinthians,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985), 576.
[iii] Craig Brian Larson, 750 Engaging Illustrations for Preachers, Teachers & Writers (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2002), 577–578.
[iv] Ibid., 578–579.
Related Media
See more
Related Sermons
See more